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Are Box Sets Outdated?


Do you own box sets? I don't really have many. In fact, I think the only two I own are Aerosmith's Pandora's Box and Led Zeppelin's self titled 1990 set.

I was at a mall music store over the weekend and I wandered over to the box set section. There was nothing new and only one row of choices. When I was in high school, it seemed like box sets were very much in style.  Now...not so much and I guess this is because of file sharing and iTunes. Let's not forget that box sets are also a major luxury, collector's items...and truly expensive.

When Aerosmith released Box of Fire in 1994, I was mesmerized. My glam goodness, I wanted this so bad. I didn't get it and I still don't own Box of Fire and now it's out of print.  The set contains 13 discs and - at the time - was the definitive look at Aerosmith's career.

Perhaps that's another reason why the box set is failing: a hundred bucks and a few years later, the set is probably out of date. Still, box sets can provide a fan with a special experience, often containing rare or unreleased tracks, familiar hits and cool "memorabilia" like buttons, patches and replica posters or concert tickets.

So many music companies are looking for any way possible to make money these days and box sets are expensive to produce and tough to market. It's hard to get fans to drop a hundred bucks on some greatest hits plus a concert ticket and a T-shirt. Still, I hope we haven't seen the end of box sets. I always thought when I earned a little more money I'd begin collecting used box sets. For whatever reason time got in the way and I just haven't started my collection. I would hate for digital music to usurp the joy of unwrapping a CD or investigating a new box set for the first time.

Do you collect box sets?

Reader Comments (17)

i have a few box sets. i have the crue box sets. i havent bought one in years thanks to the internet. come to think about . i havent bought a cd in a long time . i figure why buy it , when you can get it for free.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterrob
I just got an Elvis "The U.K. Singles" box.18 times 3 songs of wich the third song an alternate take is of one of his hits from my now ex-girlfriend.
Now i love Elvis and i hate her;ofcourse i love Elvis,ha ha !

Greetings from Holland.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterA.J
I just own Kiss' boxset, Elvis and Bon Jovi...I agree with you Allyson..I like to be excited when opening up a new CD to see the cool photos and all..Hope you had a great weekend and give my best to Eric...Jody says hello too =)
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJoe
I have boxed sets on CD of Misfits, Helloween and Hanoi Rocks and a Venom one on vinyl. My thing with boxed sets is that by the time it comes out I may have a portion of the material already and don't want to shell out the cash for just some stuff I don't already have.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMetal Mark
Yes, I have the box of fire, and the Iron Maiden box with the live sets, the pewter shot glass and the family tree, and a bunch of others ( Hollywood Rocks! springs to mind, you don't own that ? ). I love them.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChristian
Oh, I have the Crue box sets ( got that comic again, I lost it over the years ), the KISS live box, the Black n Blue complete, Hanoi Rocks complete, the Metallica Binge n Purge, the Bon Jovi one ( which sucks ), etc.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChristian
I also have the Crue box set (volumue 1) and the Queensryche box set Operation Live Crime. I remember getting Live Crime for xmas when I was in high school...I wanted it SO bad I could taste it! Thank goodness Santa was nice to me that year. :) Come to think of it, I got my Crue box set as a xmas gift as well. I guess the truth of the matter is that it's hard for me to throw down that kind of money, so I always ask for box sets as xmas or bday gifts.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChristine
Ah, box sets...I have a couple: Journey/Time, Police, Bon Jovi, Eagles...oh, and the husband had to have the Star Wars Soundtrack box set. ;) All of them were Christmas/Birthday presents.

June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChessie
Yeah, box sets make killer presents. I really want the Motorhead one, but have not got around to buying it
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChristian
Yeah, I have a few box sets;
The "Hollywood Rocks 4-disc set"(LOVE THAT!)
I also have, Bon Jovi "100 Million Bon Jovi Fans Can't Be Wrong".
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenteraXe mAn
Oh yeah, and I also want to get the AC/DC and KISS ones...I think that would be cool.

I just love collecting things like that.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenteraXe mAn
I forgot I own the Hollywood Rocks box set..LOVE that one =)
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJoe
Oh, I do have Bonfire, and the Operation mind crime with the DVD, and others.
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChristian
The box sets I have that I can recall right now are: Metallica / Kiss / Journey / Cheap Trick / Led Zepplin / Fleetwood Mac / Rod Stewart / Aerosmith / AC/DC / Alice Cooper / Kansas / ZZ Top / Alice In Chains
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBillie
June 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterALEXX
I'm a sucker for box sets especially if there are bonuses involved (like the Crue sets) but it's also cool to grab a band's entire career in one shot (like the Led Zep box).

I have more than a few, let's see how many I can remember without going up to the music room:

Queen - The Crown Jewels: I got this for my birthday from my mom when it first came out. She knew I was a big Queen guy and she had no idea which album to buy me so she went up to my room and looked for a big blue box that said Queen. Love ya mom!

KISS - The Box Set (regular edition): I waited in line at the local Best Buy with my daughter (she was 3 in 2001) with a whole bunch of KISS fans! It was like the old days waiting in line for a special release. My daughter and I had our Reunion shirts on and she took picturs with everyone in line because she would stick her tongue out and give the Metal horns. I'm a proud Dad!

Aerosmith - Box Of Fire: Buy it! I picked this up to fill all the holes in my Aerosmith collection. I remember the old record shop I went to was having a trade-in promotion where they doubled their normal trade-in price on used CDs for one day. I took advantage and traded in Gems, Classics Live 1 & 2, Greatest Hits, Get Your Wings, Rock In A Hard Place, & Toys In The Attic. I had about $50 in credit and I scored the set for half off.

Gamma Ray - Ultimate Collection: I had all the Gamma Ray discs already by getting them used at the old shop but I snagged Ultimate Collection for the bonus tracks and I used a bunch of gift cards I'd been saving so it was free!

Tank - The Filth Hounds Of Hades box: This one just came out on Metal Mind this year. It spans Tank's career from the beginning to 2002 and included a DVD. I was lucky to score a review copy because this goes for about $125 average. It's limited edition but a great slice of NWOBHM history.

I have both Crue sets, I have Hollywood Rocks, both Judas Priest sets (remastered albums & Metalogy), Helloween's Treasure Chest, Motorhead's Protect the Innocent, and the Sabbath remastered Ozzy years. I know there are more but I don't feel like heading upstairs!

There are a couple that have eluded me: Iced Earth's Dark Genesis, the Led Zep box, and the new Loudness box from Japan, and the guitar case version of the KISS box set.

Heavy Metal Addiction
Just remembered, I forgot the Alice Cooper - The Life & Crimes Of Alice Cooper box set (my favorite) and the Metal Blade 20th Anniversary box set!

Heavy Metal Addiction

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